Backstage Axxess: Heart will be releasing their 13th studio effort ‘Red Velvet Car’ on Sony Legacy Records on August 31, 2010 in North America (August 30 in Europe.) Included on the European release are two extra tracks called “Bootful of Beer” and “Closer to the Sun.” The band still consists of rock icons Ann and Nancy Wilson, Ben Smith (drums), Craig Bartock (guitar), Debbie Shair (Keyboards) and studio bassist Rik Markmann, who contributed his talents to this album.
The acoustic driven and tambourine shaking “There You Go” is the first cut from the CD, followed by “WTF,” which serves as the record’s hardest rocking track. Drummer Ben Smith shows why he has been the backbone of Heart since 1995. He takes charge on this song and drives it where it needs to go.
Ann’s sultry voice is masterful on the title tune, “Red Velvet Car;” a song with soul and sex appeal all rolled up in one. Nancy takes over the lead vocals on “Hey You” and “Sunflower.” “Hey You” is the first radio single that just debuted in the first week of July. The track “Wheels” offers a more up-tempo experience and lives up to the title as it has a rolling feel which accompanies it. Ann showcases her one-of-a-kind voice on “Safronias Mark” while Nancy breaks out her mandolin. “Death Valley” is probably my favorite song on the disc, as the Wilson harmonies flow effortlessly in unison with Nancy’s acoustic prowess.
This CD takes a different approach than 2004’s ‘Jupiter’s Darling’ as it’s more of a melodic and easy listening release. The “First Sisters of Rock” are at a place were they are able to make the records they want to make. To me, that’s refreshing and honest. Hopefully others will feel the same way!